Ruben Tejada is inactive while his New York Mets are playing in the World Series and it’s because of that infamous slide from Chase Utley. When asked about how he feels about that play and how he’s dealt with it since, he sounds like a person who was knocked out of the biggest games of his professional life.
In an article run on ESPN by Adam Rubin, Tejada had this to say:
“He’s a veteran guy,” Tejada said about Utley. “We know he plays hard. It’s different when you play hard, and you try to do something else.”
Utley apologized to Tejada via a message left with captain David Wright. Asked if he accepts Utley’s apology, Tejada said: “I did, because you know I’m really a good person, but I can’t do anything. He knows what he did, and he has to do something to figure out how to play the game the right way.”
I can’t help but feel for Tejada here. The play was dirty, but occurred because of an antiquated culture guys play in. Now, as his team is down two games to one in to the Kansas City Royals, any competitor would naturally feel as if he could help his team if only he was healthy.
That Tejada is injured because of a specific play at the hands of another person has to be almost impossible to get over. His quotes and effort that he appears to be putting into trying to move on are pretty admirable to say the least.